UNICEF Nairobi, Kenya
Consultancy: Development of Nutrition Budget Brief Guidelines, ESARO
Job no: 523179
Position type: Consultancy
Location: Kenya Division/Equivalent: Nairobi Regn’l(ESARO)
Department/Office: Nairobi, Kenya
Categories: Social and Economic Policy
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TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR INDIVIDUAL CONTRACTORS/ CONSULTANTS
Title of Assignment
Development of Nutrition Budget Brief Guidelines
Activity No. 2 of the 2019 Rolling Work Plan of the Nutrition section: At least 5 regional strategies, plans, guidance and frameworks for accelerated stunting reduction are developed and/or up-dated
50 working days over a period of 7 months
Background and Justification
UNICEF is increasingly working with governments to make public resources work better for children in the Eastern and Southern Africa region (ESAR). Under the programme stream known as public finance for children (PF4C), UNICEF’s engagement can be broadly organized into three areas: (i) measuring and monitoring, (ii) maximizing the impact and (iii) increasing investment in social sectors.
Much of the work centers around measuring and monitoring government investment, mainly through the use of budget briefs. In 2015, UNICEF’s Regional Office for Eastern and Southern Africa (ESARO) began encouraging country offices to develop budget briefs. Through the region-wide initiative, the number of budget briefs produced increased significantly. While just two country offices produced a total of six briefs in fiscal year 2015, this included 19 offices and around 90 briefs in fiscal year 2018. Reflecting the utility and impact of these products, the Regional Priorities (2018-21) formalized the requirement for all offices to develop annual budget briefs as a minimum standard to support engagement in public financial management (PFM) processes.This recommendation is also endorsed by the RMT. All published briefs are available on the ESARO budget brief website.
While budget briefs now routinely cover child protection, education, health, social protection and WASH sectors, very little work has been done on nutrition. To date, only three offices have attempted to develop budget briefs for nutrition. These include Tanzania in 2016, Angola in 2018 and Malawi in 2019.
At the same time, there have been very few attempts to measure spending on nutrition using other public finance tools in ESAR. For example, UNICEF Tanzania recently published a Public Expenditure Review (PER) of nutrition in 2018, which was only the second PER ever conducted globally on nutrition – the first was also supported by UNICEF Tanzania in 2014. At the same time, only a limited number of governments have produced rapid nutrition budget analyses through the Scaling up Nutrition (SUN) Movement. Further, the existing reports are not actionable, since they present very scant information and analysis of investment trends and do not offer recommendations for improving the transparency, impact or amount of resources directed to nutrition services.
The lack of routine measurement of investment in nutrition is especially worrisome given the increasing malnutrition levels facing children in the region. Based on the latest available estimates, more than one out of every three children in ESAR are stunted, on average, which affects close to 30 million children.  Given the severe impacts of malnutrition on children, and the critical role of government investment in addressing the underlying challenges, it is an urgent priority to develop a tool that can be readily used by UNICEF and partners to routinely monitor investment in and progress on nutrition.
Annual Work Plan, Objectives and Deliverables
Annual work plan areas covered
This consultancy will support the following components of the regional 2019 Annual Work plan:
- Nutrition DE Key deliverable #2 ‘At least 5 regional strategies, plans, guidance and frameworks for accelerated stunting reduction are developed and/or up-dated’ and
- Nutrition GRP Key deliverable # 3 ‘At least 4 knowledge products are developed including innovative approaches, good practice and lessons learned, and their results are disseminated’.
Under the guidance and oversight of the Nutrition Specialist and the Social Policy Specialist in ESARO, the overall objective of this assignment is to develop budget brief guidelines for the nutrition sector. Specific objectives include:
- Develop a methodology for conducting a rapid nutrition budget analysis: This will begin with a comprehensive desk review of existing public finance tools and guidelines that assess investment in nutrition. Among others, this will include the budget briefs and PERs developed by UNICEF (as mentioned earlier), the SUN three-step approach to nutrition budget analysis and country reports, World Bank related documentation and those of other partners available and globally. The review will summarize the methodological approaches used to identify different types of nutrition spending, the structure of presenting the information, the specific types of figures and tables that are produced, and the recommendations that are offered. A proposal will then be developed based on this information. This should address key issues, such as: (i) identifying nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive investment; (ii) the treatment of government and donor funded activities, including how to deal with on-budget (funds that run through the Treasury) and off-budget (funds that are not included in the regular government budget); (iii) working with and adapting to different types of budget classification systems (functional, economic, administrative and program); and (iv) offering step-by-step guidance on how to present and utilize the budget analysis.
- Draft nutrition budget brief guidelines and companion Excel template: The consultant will incorporate and adapt the information from the agreed proposal into the structure of UNICEF ESARO’s budget brief guidelines for other sectors. With the assistance of the social policy team in ESARO, the consultant will also develop a draft Excel-based tool that will be used to produce all figures for the budget brief.
- Test the draft guidelines and Excel template in two ESAR countries: The consultant will travel to and work with the nutrition and social policy teams in two country offices that have already requested TA support from ESARO as part of the Compact requests to develop a nutrition budget brief.
- Finalize the guidelines and Excel template: Based on the experiences and lessons from the two country applications, the consultant will update and finalize the guidelines and the Excel template.
The main deliverables are summarized below in chronological order: Deliverables
(# of days)
1. Draft proposal and inception report for conducting a rapid nutrition budget analysis (10 pages max)
2. Final proposal for conducting a rapid nutrition budget analysis (incorporating feedback)
end June 2019
3. First draft nutrition budget brief guidelines
4. First draft nutrition budget brief companion Excel template
5. Second draft nutrition budget brief guidelines (incorporating feedback)
6. Second nutrition budget brief companion Excel template (incorporating feedback)
end July 2019
7. Draft nutrition budget brief, including mission travel (first country) (15 pages max)
50% upon satisfactory delivery of deliverables 1-7
8. Final nutrition budget brief (first country)
9. Draft nutrition budget brief, including mission travel (second country) (15 pages max)
10. Final nutrition budget brief (second country)
end September 2019
11. Lessons learned and proposal for finalizing the guidelines, webinar presentation developed and template (2 pages max)
12. Final draft nutrition budget brief guidelines and webinar presentation conducted with ESARO country offices
13. Final nutrition budget brief companion Excel template
end December 2019
50% upon satisfactory delivery of deliverables 8-13
The Consultant will be paid upon receipt of satisfactory deliverables as outlined above:
- Deliverables that meet UNICEF’s quality standard.
Desired competencies, technical background and experience
- Advanced university degree in economics, public financial management or related area;
- Minimum of 8 years of working on public finance issues and at least 5 years on expenditure analysis;
- Knowledge of UNICEF programme areas, especially nutrition, is a major asset;
- Must be reliable and able to work with little supervision;
- Advanced data analysis skills, including advanced Excel;
- Excellent drafting and writing skills;
- Excellent spoken and written English and French is a plus.
The Consultant will work remotely and will perform all tasks using her/his own computer. Travel will be expected to Nairobi during the inception period for 3 days and to 2 Countries in ESARO region (Zimbabwe and Madagascar) for a total of 10 days of travel for both trips.
The contract will be established for 50 working days over a period of 7 months. She/he will be jointly supervised by the Nutrition Specialist and Social Policy Specialist in ESARO. As per UNICEF DFAM policy, payment is made against approved deliverables. No advance payment is allowed unless in exceptional circumstances against bank guarantee, subject to a maximum of 30 per cent of the total contract value in cases where advance purchases, for example for supplies or travel, may be necessary. The candidate selected will be governed by and subject to UNICEF’s General Terms and Conditions for individual contracts.
Qualified candidates are requested to submit a cover letter (no more than
- 5 pages) summarizing relevant experience along with their CV
In the cover letter, please indicate your availability to start the assignment along with your financial proposal (including travel expenses) to undertake the terms of reference above. Applications submitted without this information will not be considered.
Compensation will be commensurate to experience and guided by competitive market rates.
 Cummins, M. (2019 forthcoming) The Macroeconomic and Social Investment Outlook for Children in Eastern and Southern Africa, Nairobi: UNICEF ESARO, chapter
UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles.
Advertised: Nov 15 2019 E. Africa Standard Time Application close: Dec 13 2019 E. Africa Standard Time